How to Write a Synopsis for PhD With Focus on the Right Format

How to Write a Synopsis for PhD With Focus on the Right Format

The correct format of synopsis starts with an introduction and ends with a conclusion, but the confusion lies in knowing what’s in between them. This guide will show you how to do the right format of synopsis for PhD. Moreover, a focus on the importance of synopsis format will also be shed light in this blog. Knowing the correct structure and parts of a PhD summary is super important because it's like a map for your whole research. And if you need some extra help, there are services out there, like APA Formatting Services, that can make sure your summary is top-notch. Whether you're just starting or want to make your summary better, this guide will give you simple tips for writing according to the right PhD Synopsis Format.

Importance of Synopsis Format

The right format of synopsis for PhD is really important because it's like a roadmap for your research. It helps you organize your ideas in a clear and easy-to-follow way. When you stick to the format, it shows that you understand the rules of academic writing and take your research seriously. This makes it easier for your readers to understand what you're trying to say. It's like using a recipe to make sure your dish turns out just right. Plus, when you follow the format, it makes your work look more professional. This is important because it gives a good impression to your professors and peers. So, the PhD Synopsis Format isn't just a bunch of rules - it's a tool that helps you present your research in the best possible way.

Correct PhD thesis Format

A PhD synopsis is like a summary of what you want to study for your doctorate. It's like a roadmap that tells people what your research will be about. Let's break it down:

1. Title : - Choose a clear and catchy title for your research.

2. Introduction : - Introduce the topic you want to study. - Explain why it's important and how it fits into existing knowledge.

3. Research Question : - Clearly state the main question you want to answer in your research.

4. Objectives : - List the specific goals you want to achieve with your research.

5. Literature Review : - Summarize what others have already found about your topic. - Highlight any gaps in the current knowledge.

6. Methodology : - Explain how you will conduct your research. - Mention the methods, tools, and techniques you'll use.

7. Data Collection : - Describe where you'll get your information or data from. - Explain how you'll gather it.

8. Analysis : - Say how you'll examine the data to find answers to your research question.

9. Expected Results : - Predict what you think you'll discover from your research.

10. Significance : - Explain why your research is important for the field and how it can be useful.

11. Timeline : - Give a rough idea of how long each phase of your research will take.

12. References : - List the books, articles, and sources you've used for your synopsis.

Remember, keep it clear and simple. Your synopsis should give a good overview of your research without getting too detailed. Good luck with your PhD journey!

Understand the Guidelines: How Understanding Guidelines Helps in Writing a Synopsis for PhD With Focus on the Right Format.

1. ensures proper organization: - guides you in arranging sections logically and coherently. - helps in presenting important information in a structured way., 2. facilitates clarity and readability: - enables you to use headings and subheadings effectively for clear presentation. - ensures that the reader can easily follow and understand your research., 3. enhances professionalism: - reflects your proficiency in adhering to academic standards. - presents your work in a manner consistent with the expectations of the academic community., 4. minimizes revisions and corrections: - reduces the likelihood of having to make significant changes later on. - saves time and effort in the long run by getting it right from the start., outline your research clearly.

When you outline your research, you're basically giving a clear picture of what your study is all about. This helps the reader know right away what to expect and why your work is important. It's like telling a story – you start with the main idea and then explain the details. This also helps you stay on track. When you know what you want to say, it's easier to put it down on paper. You won't forget important points or get lost in your own thoughts. It's like having a plan before building a house – you know where each brick goes. When you outline your research clearly, it makes writing the synopsis much easier. You already know what to say and in what order. It's like having a blueprint before constructing a building – you know where everything goes. This clarity also benefits the reader. They can easily grasp your research and understand its significance. It's like reading a well-organized story – everything makes sense and keeps the reader engaged. This way, your synopsis becomes a valuable piece of academic work, contributing meaningfully to your field.

Adhere to the Prescribed Format

Importance of adhering to the prescribed format:.

Following a specific format ensures that your synopsis is organized and easy to follow. Each section has a designated place, making it clear for the reader to navigate through your research.

Universities have specific guidelines for a reason. Adhering to the prescribed format shows that you respect and understand these academic standards. It's like speaking the language of academia.

Proper formatting demonstrates a high level of professionalism. It shows that you take your research seriously and are committed to presenting it in a way that meets the expectations of the academic community.

When everyone uses the same format, it avoids confusion. Readers, including your professors and peers, can quickly find the information they need. It's like using a universal key that fits the lock.

Final Thoughts

To sum it up, understanding the right way to set up your PhD summary, as explained in the format of synopsis for PhD, is really important. This format is like a map that helps you present your research in a clear and organized way. It's like following a recipe to make sure your dish turns out just right. Sticking to this format also shows that you take your research seriously and respect the rules of the academic world. If you need some extra help in understanding the importance of synopsis format, services like APA Formatting Services can make sure your summary meets the highest standards. By following these guidelines, you not only make your research easy to read and understand but also show that you're dedicated to producing top-notch work. Remember, a well-organized summary and the right PhD Synopsis Format isn't just informative, it's a big step towards earning your PhD.

Thesis India provides comprehensive support to researchers in India who aspire to make significant contributions to their fields of study. They offer expert assistance in crafting an exceptional doctoral research proposal, which is more than just a document; it is your gateway to an enriching academic voyage. Their team of experienced researchers and writers is dedicated to helping you craft a proposal that showcases the depth of your knowledge and the potential impact of your research. They specialize in providing comprehensive support to researchers like you, ensuring a successful start to your PhD journey with a compelling research proposal. They also offer expert synopsis editing services to ensure your synopsis meets the highest standards. The format of synopsis for PhD may vary from one institution to another, but Thesis India can guide you on how to do the correct PhD Synopsis Format.

1. What should be included in a PhD synopsis?

A PhD synopsis should include the research topic, objectives, methodology, literature review, expected outcomes, and references.

2. How long is a PhD synopsis?

A PhD synopsis is typically about 10-15 pages long.

3. How many pages is a PhD synopsis?

A PhD synopsis is usually between 20-30 pages.

4. How do you start a PhD synopsis presentation?

Start a PhD synopsis presentation by introducing yourself, stating the research topic, and providing an overview of the research objectives.

5. What are the parts of the synopsis in PhD?

The parts of a PhD synopsis include the introduction, literature review, methodology, expected outcomes, and references.

We provide consulting service along with writing assistance for PhD candidates from across the world Fill This Form To Get A Quote

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Call at 080 6945 9991 (10 Lines) , Whatsapp at +91-93156 49477 for Discussion of your PhD Project

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How to Write a Research Synopsis: Template, Examples, & More

Last Updated: February 12, 2024 Fact Checked

Research Synopsis Template

  • Organizing & Formatting
  • Writing Your Synopsis
  • Reviewing & Editing

This article was reviewed by Gerald Posner and by wikiHow staff writer, Raven Minyard, BA . Gerald Posner is an Author & Journalist based in Miami, Florida. With over 35 years of experience, he specializes in investigative journalism, nonfiction books, and editorials. He holds a law degree from UC College of the Law, San Francisco, and a BA in Political Science from the University of California-Berkeley. He’s the author of thirteen books, including several New York Times bestsellers, the winner of the Florida Book Award for General Nonfiction, and has been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in History. He was also shortlisted for the Best Business Book of 2020 by the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 221,578 times.

A research synopsis describes the plan for your research project and is typically submitted to professors or department heads so they can approve your project. Most synopses are between 3,000 and 4,000 words and provide your research objectives and methods. While the specific types of information you need to include in your synopsis may vary depending on your department guidelines, most synopses include the same basic sections. In this article, we’ll walk you step-by-step through everything you need to know to write a synopsis for research.

Things You Should Know

  • Begin your research synopsis by introducing the question your research will answer and its importance to your field.
  • List 2 or 3 specific objectives you hope to achieve and how they will advance your field.
  • Discuss your methodology to demonstrate why the study design you chose is appropriate for your research question.

cover page for phd synopsis

Organizing Your Research Synopsis

Step 1 Follow the formatting guidelines provided by your instructor.

  • Find out what citation format you’re supposed to use, as well as whether you’re expected to use parenthetical references or footnotes in the body of your synopsis.
  • If you have questions about anything in your guidelines, ask your instructor or advisor to ensure you follow them correctly.

Step 2 Set up the headings for your sections.

  • Title: the title of your study
  • Abstract: a summary of your research synopsis
  • Introduction: identifies and describes your research question
  • Literature Review: a review of existing relevant research
  • Objectives: goals you hope to accomplish through your study
  • Hypotheses: results you expect to find through your research
  • Methodology and methods: explains the methods you’ll use to complete your study
  • References: a list of any references used in citations

Tip: Your synopsis might have additional sections, depending on your discipline and the type of research you're conducting. Talk to your instructor or advisor about which sections are required for your department.

Step 3 Format your references.

  • Keep in mind that you might not end up using all the sources you initially found. After you've finished your synopsis, go back and delete the ones you didn't use.

Writing Your Research Synopsis

Step 1 Format your title page following your instructor’s guidelines.

  • Your title should be a brief and specific reflection of the main objectives of your study. In general, it should be under 50 words and should avoid unneeded phrases like “an investigation into.”
  • On the other hand, avoid a title that’s too short, as well. For example, a title like “A Study of Urban Heating” is too short and doesn’t provide any insight into the specifics of your research.

Step 2 Identify your research problem with the introduction.

  • The introduction allows you to explain to your reader exactly why the question you’re trying to answer is vital and how your knowledge and experience make you the best researcher to tackle it.
  • Support most of the statements in your introduction with other studies in the area that support the importance of your question. For example, you might cite a previous study that mentions your problem as an area where further research needs to be done.
  • The length of your introduction will vary depending on the overall length of your synopsis as well as the ultimate length of your eventual paper after you’ve finished your research. Generally, it will cover the first page or two of your synopsis.

Step 3 In your literature review, describe the work done by other researchers.

  • For example, try finding relevant literature through educational journals or bulletins from organizations like WHO and CDC.
  • Typically, a thorough literature review discusses 8 to 10 previous studies related to your research problem.
  • As with the introduction, the length of your literature review will vary depending on the overall length of your synopsis. Generally, it will be about the same length as your introduction.
  • Try to use the most current research available and avoid sources over 5 years old.

Step 4 Set forth the goals or objectives for your research project.

  • For example, an objective for research on urban heating could be “to compare urban heat modification caused by vegetation of mixed species considering the 5 most common urban trees in an area.”
  • Generally, the overall objective doesn’t relate to solving a specific problem or answering a specific question. Rather, it describes how your particular project will advance your field.
  • For specific objectives, think in terms of action verbs like “quantify” or “compare.” Here, you’re hoping to gain a better understanding of associations between particular variables.

Step 5 List your hypotheses for your research project.

  • Specify the sources you used and the reasons you have arrived at your hypotheses. Typically, these will come from prior studies that have shown similar relationships.
  • For example, suppose a prior study showed that children who were home-schooled were less likely to be in fraternities or sororities in college. You might use that study to back up a hypothesis that home-schooled children are more independent and less likely to need strong friendship support networks.

Step 6 Discuss the methodology and methods you’ll use in your research.

  • Expect your methodology to be at least as long as either your introduction or your literature review, if not longer. Include enough detail that your reader can fully understand how you’re going to carry out your study.
  • This section of your synopsis may include information about how you plan to collect and analyze your data, the overall design of your study, and your sampling methods, if necessary. Include information about the study setting, like the facilities and equipment that are available to you to carry out your study.
  • For example, your research work may take place in a hospital, and you may use cluster sampling to gather data.

Step 7 Complete your abstract last.

  • Use between 100 and 200 words to give your readers a basic understanding of your research project.
  • Include a clear statement of the problem, the main goals or objectives of your study, the theories or conceptual framework your research relies upon, and the methods you’ll use to reach your goals or objectives.

Tip: Jot down a few notes as you draft your other sections that you can compile for your abstract to keep your writing more efficient.

Reviewing and Editing Your Research Synopsis

Step 1 Take a break before you start editing.

  • If you don’t have that kind of time because you’re up against a deadline, at least take a few hours away from your synopsis before you go back to edit it. Do something entirely unrelated to your research, like taking a walk or going to a movie.

Step 2 Edit for clarity and concision.

  • Eliminate sentences that don’t add any new information. Even the longest synopsis is a brief document—make sure every word needs to be there and counts for something.
  • Get rid of jargon and terms of art in your field that could be better explained in plain language. Even though your likely readers are people who are well-versed in your field, providing plain language descriptions shows you know what you’re talking about. Using jargon can seem like you’re trying to sound like you know more than you actually do.

Tip: Free apps, such as Grammarly and Hemingway App, can help you identify grammatical errors as well as areas where your writing could be clearer. However, you shouldn't rely solely on apps since they can miss things.

Step 3 Check the format of your references.

  • Reference list formatting is very particular. Read your references out loud, with the punctuation and spacing, to pick up on errors you wouldn’t have noticed if you’d just read over them.
  • Compare your format to the one in the stylebook you’re using and make sure all of your entries are correct.

Step 4 Proofread your synopsis carefully.

  • Read your synopsis backward by starting on the last word and reading each word separately from the last to the first. This helps isolate spelling errors. Reading backward sentence by sentence helps you isolate grammatical errors without being distracted by the content.
  • Print your synopsis and circle every punctuation mark with a red pen. Then, go through them and focus on whether they’re correct.
  • Read your synopsis out loud, including the punctuation, as though you were dictating the synopsis.

Step 5 Share your paper with classmates and friends for review.

  • Have at least one person who isn’t familiar with your area of study look over your synopsis. If they can understand your project, you know your writing is clear. If any parts confuse them, then that’s an area where you can improve the clarity of your writing.

Step 6 Do a second round of editing and proofreading.

Expert Q&A

  • If you make significant changes to your synopsis after your first or second round of editing, you may need to proofread it again to make sure you didn’t introduce any new errors. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0

cover page for phd synopsis

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All the essentials at a glance

Rainald Manthe ist Soziologe und hat in Duisburg-Essen, Bielefeld und St. Petersburg studiert. An der Universität Luzern und der University of Chicago hat er zu transnationalen sozialen Bewegungen geforscht. 

When do I have to write a synopsis?

You will need to write one in situations like these:

  • Looking for an adviser
  • Applying for a PhD student position
  • Applying for a stipend
  • Applying to a graduate school

What exactly is a synopsis?

A synopsis describes your research objective. It is important to clearly state your topic, your goals, and your specific approach. This gives external readers an overview of your research project. You should also remember that a synopsis is just a framework—your actual dissertation can deviate from it. A synopsis should also be as realistic as possible at the time it is written.

You can adjust your outline depending on your target audience. While it may be important to show a professor or graduate school how your topic fits into their research programme, applicants for PhD positions are evaluated heavily on quality and feasibility. Organisations that promote young, talented students will want to know how the project fits in with their world view.

How should I structure my synopsis?

Synopses do not have a uniform structure. However, almost every research synopsis contains these components:

  • Title: This should provide information on both the general topic of the work and the specific aspects you want to examine. Ideally, the title itself will give a rough summary of what phenomena you will be looking at and through which lens. Your title and subtitle should not be more than four lines long.
  • Topic of the work: You can introduce the reader to your topic through several episodes, and you might highlight some particularly interesting aspect. It is important to embed your topic in the existing research landscape. What literature is already available and how does it deal with your topic? It may be useful to draw on publications from other disciplines as well. It is helpful to find a system for addressing gaps in existing research. The literature you cite should clearly indicate which aspects of the topic have not yet been appropriately addressed. These gaps in the research will, in turn, determine the questions you want to examine in your own research. The synopsis may also include an initial hypothesis, depending on your discipline.
  • Approach: After you have formulated your research question, you should explain the approach you will use to answer it. This section deals with two aspects. First, you must clearly describe the theoretical lens you want to use to address the question. This section is more important in some disciplines, and less so in others. The methodology question is important in every discipline. You should invest some time and energy in answering it. What methods can you use to answer the research question ? What tools will you need, and are they already available? What problems could arise? Your approach might also include definitions of key terms used in your work.
  • Literature: Just like academic works themselves, synopses include a bibliography, listing all of the sources cited in the document. Whether or not to add publications you have not cited to the list depends on what is customary in your specific discipline. It is important to show that you have a good understanding of current research available on your topic.
  • Timeline: The timeline should state the steps you need to complete before presenting your research results, and should be as realistic as possible. Typically, a dissertation timeline ends when you submit your work. In Germany, the trend is to grant dissertation stipends that last around three years. If you are applying for a three-year stipend, then your timeline should cover this time period. Your timeline should also include buffer time, and shouldn’t leave out vacations. It needs to be realistic, and will be used to evaluate your project itself.

What else can I include in my synopsis?

In addition to the mandatory components of the research synopsis, there are several optional elements:

  • Organisation of the work: Frequently, qualification theses will expect a (preliminary) organisational structure.
  • Summary: You can add a short summary at the start of your research synopsis to give readers a better overview. It should state your topic, describe gaps in the research, and clarify your own question.
  • Goals and expected findings: How will your research contribute to academic knowledge as a whole? What important findings will it deliver? It may make sense to include this information, depending on the purpose of the synopsis.

What else do I need to know?

  • You do not need to reinvent the wheel. In many fields, you will be able to build on a broad base of research literature. It is good to develop clear questions when starting your research and to make sure they can realistically be completed within your allotted time.
  • Developing a synopsis often takes several months. The more carefully you think about your research project at the start, the more time you will save during the research process itself.
  • Diligence makes a good impression. Your synopsis also shows whether you are ready to handle the research project you have designed for yourself. Do you know how to cite other works, assess research literature, and write a realistic-sounding timeline? Is your theoretical and methodological approach appropriate for the research question?
  • You are never alone in your research. You can ask classmates, colleagues, or even experienced academics for advice on developing your synopsis.
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  1. PDF Format of PhD Synopsis

    PhD Scholars of all disciplines are expected to ensure that the synopsis submitted to the center for research complies with the guidelines in this handbook. 1. Parts of the synopsis. Every synopsis will have three parts. The first part is the cover page. The second part is the preliminary pages and the third is the main body.

  2. Thesis & Dissertation Title Page

    The title page (or cover page) of your thesis, dissertation, or research paper should contain all the key information about your document. It usually includes: Dissertation or thesis title. Your name. The type of document (e.g., dissertation, research paper) The department and institution. The degree program (e.g., Master of Arts)

  3. PDF synopsis- cover page

    Page 2 of 2 FORMAT: TITLE PAGE: LITERATURE REVIEW: AIM & OBJECTIVES: PROBLEM STATEMENT / JUSTIFICATION : METHODLOGY: Source of data / Result REFERENCE: TIMES NEW ROMAN Font Size-12 Spacing - 1.5 Page Alignment- T (1.0 cm) B (1.0cm) RS (1.5cm) LS (1.0cm) Page Number- Middle of the Page (bottom)


    white art paper. The cover should be printed in black letters and the text for printing should be identical to what has been prescribed for the title page. 7. Submission of Synopsis: • Four softbound copies of the synopsis are to be submitted along with a soft copy of the synopsis (pdf file) on a CD with proper labeling.

  5. How to Write a Synopsis for PhD With Focus on the Right Format

    Significance: - Explain why your research is important for the field and how it can be useful. 11. Timeline: - Give a rough idea of how long each phase of your research will take. 12. References: - List the books, articles, and sources you've used for your synopsis. Remember, keep it clear and simple.

  6. How to Write a Synopsis for Research: A Step-By-Step Guide

    1. Format your title page following your instructor's guidelines. In general, the title page of a research synopsis includes the title of the research project, your name, the degree and discipline for which you're writing the synopsis, and the names of your supervisor, department, institution, and university.

  7. Sample Dissertation Cover Page + How To

    Sample Dissertation Title Page. While each university has slightly different requirements, generally speaking, a dissertation cover page looks something like this, above. The required sections are as follows: TITLE. A Dissertation. Submitted to XXXXX University. Graduate Faculty of the School of XXXXXXXX.


    D SYNOPSIS (Format & Specifications) 1. Cover page: This page may be prepared as per the enclosed format. 2. ... ID for the evaluation of the PhD thesis at the time of synopsis meeting. The Preparation of the Synopsis (fonts, margins, chapter no., section and sub section no, equation no., tables, figures, appendices, references, publications ...

  9. The Dissertation Title Page

    August 12, 2020. The title page of your dissertation or thesis conveys all the essential details about your project, including: The title of your project. Your full name (including student number if required) Clarification of whether this is a dissertation or thesis document. The name of your academic department. The name of your university.

  10. Synopsis: A prerequisite before starting the PhD

    A synopsis describes your research objective. It is important to clearly state your topic, your goals, and your specific approach. This gives external readers an overview of your research project. You should also remember that a synopsis is just a framework—your actual dissertation can deviate from it. A synopsis should also be as realistic ...


    ORGANISATION OF THE PARTS OF SYNOPSIS 1. Cover Page 2. Title Page 3. Table of content 4. Chapters 5. References 6. List of Publication The size of Synopsis should not strictly exceed 25-30 pages of typed matter reckoned from the first page to the last page including List of Publication.

  12. APA Title Page (7th edition)

    The student version of the APA title page should include the following information (double spaced and centered): Paper title. Author name. Department and university name. Course number and name. Instructor name. Due date of the assignment. The professional title page also includes an author note (flushed left), but not a course name, instructor ...

  13. PDF Guidelines for Writing Ph. D Synopsis

    Guidelines for Writing Ph. D Synopsis I. Cover Page (title and student name) II. Table of Contents Table of Cases (if case laws are added) Structure of Project Report (follow the given structure by creating the mentioned sections) 1. Introduction Introduction (state brief background and introduce the subject in few pages;

  14. PDF Guidelines for preparation of Synopsis for the Ph.D. thesis

    Guidelines for preparation of Synopsis for the Ph.D. thesis 1. The length of a synopsis for the Ph.D. Thesis should normally be 1000 to 4000 words including tables and figures. The Synopsis should be on A4 size paper. Four copies of the synopsis are required to be submitted. 2.

  15. PDF Guidelines for the Preparation of Ph.D. Synopsis

    The cover page may be made in special quality paper like plastic coated paper (see the sample given below in Annexure I). 2. Inner Cover The inner cover contents shall be same as that of the cover page, but printed on ordinary A4 size bond paper. 3. Contents of Synopsis Layout: The following guidelines may be followed in the preparation of Ph.D ...


    Significance of synopsis or the research proposal cannot be overrated. Synopsis is virtually a blueprint of research which will guide you throughout your Ph.D. program. It will also act as reference point for the examiner in evaluating your final thesis. Hence preparation of the synopsis needs serious efforts from you and your supervisor

  17. Format of synopsis for PhD

    INTRODUCTION OF 2-3 PAGES . Identify a real world problem; Describe the undesirable symptoms; Identify the knowledge gap that needs to be filled in order to help solve the problem; Support your discussion with solid peer-reviewed references; LITERATURE REVIEW . Create an Outline or "mindmap" of the key theories and concepts.

  18. How to Format a PhD Synopsis (India)

    In addition to the synopsis format for a PhD, we have outlined the styling rules you should follow: Approximately 1" margins on top, bottom, and right of page. Approximately 1.25" margin on left of page to allow space for binding. Sans serif font (for example Times New Roman). Black colour font. Size 11pt or 12pt font.


    2.1 The Contents of the synopsis shall be as follows:- i. Cover Page Format at Annexure- A.IV ii. Student Undertaking at Annexure-A.V iii. Publication Details Summary at Annexure-A.VI iv. Synopsis of Research Work (Details at A.2.2) 2.2 The synopsis should be around 8-10 pages presenting a concise summary of the


    Microsoft Word - 24a.GUIDELINES FOR THE PREPARATION OF PH_169-172 blank_. GUIDELINES FOR THE PREPARATION OF PH.D/M.Sc.(Engg.) THESIS. Reports should be typed neatly on one side of the paper with 1.5 spacing on a A4 size bond paper (210x297mm). The margins should be: Left - 1.25",Right - 1", Top and Bottom 0.75".